About Beatrice Leanza


BAO Atelier is an incomplete archive of projects by Beatrice Leanza, a curator, writer and researcher based in Beijing for over 17 years. In 2019 she moved to Lisbon (Portugal) to work as the executive
director of maat – the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology. Check also maat ext. (extended) the museum’s new digital space launched in September 2020. 

Beatrice is the former creative director of Beijing Design Week (2012-2016) and chief curator of the research program Across Chinese Cities featured at the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2014, 2016 and 2018. She is co-founder of B/Side Design, an organization developing strategies of urban and social impact that spearheaded the establishment of The Global School, the first independent institute for design and creative research in the PRC.

Over the years her projects have developed into a focused exploration of research-led experimentalism and practical creativity engaging the contemporary urban condition, with a pronounced interest in cultural strategies of social engagement, community building and place making.

Having started her career as a curator at CAAW (China Art Archives and Warehouse) – the historical alternative art space founded by artist Ai Weiwei in Beijing – she later founded the research practice BAO Atelier, a unique China-based think-tank fostering encounters across the visual arts, design and architecture, active across Europe and Asia. The studio closed in 2011.

Her writings and projects have appeared in numerous publications and magazines such as Artforum, Abitare, CNN Style, Domus, Dezeen, Disegno magazine, Frieze, Frame, Flash Art Intl’, Blueprint Magazine, Metropolis, T Magazine (The NY Times), IDEAT, Liberation/NEXT, The Good Life, Il Sole 24 ore, Il Corriere della Sera, among many others including specialized Chinese press.

She is a member of the international advisory board of Design Trust (Hong Kong) and was selected as a Young European Leader Class 2018, a think tank spearheaded by the Friends of Europe Foundation in Brussel. 

If you want to know more about what Bea is up to or wish to get in touch please use the contact page.

Friends, collaborators and absolute favorites can be fond browsing through the projects and detours ‘by year’ or ‘work’.